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Pvt. Wars (One-Act)

Pvt. Wars (One-Act)
Your Price: $14.95 CDN
Author: James McLure
Publisher: Dramatists Play Service (cover may change)
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 39
Pub. Date: 1980
ISBN-10: 0822209241
ISBN-13: 9780822209249
Cast Size: 3 male

About the Play:

Pvt. Wars has long been a favourite of acting teachers for Male Monologues and Male/Male Scenes.

Pvt. Wars is a one-act dark comedy by James McLure. Paired with Lone Star in its Louisville and Broadway productions, this perceptive, touching play deals with three Vietnam veterans recuperating in a veterans' hospital. An acidly funny portrayal of three young men working to resolve their own private wars, Pvt. Wars is an uncompromisingly honest dark comedy about the humorous and intense recovery of three U.S Servicemen, now Viet Nam Vets, from physical wounds and PTSD.

Pvt. Wars is about three veterans recovering from post-traumatic stress disorder who while away their time on the terrace of an Army hospital. Gately, a hillbilly, fiddles compulsively with a disemboweled radio; Silvio, a streetwise, big-city type, is addicted to "flashing" (even though his sex organs have suffered – he thinks – irremediable battle damage); while Natwick, a prissy "rich kid" from Long Island, writes letters to his mother telling her how much he wants to become a close friend of Gately (while omitting mention of how actively Silvio dislikes him). Comprised of a series of brief blackout scenes, the play blends these into a meaningful mosaic as the three tease, torment, entertain, exasperate and, on occasion, solace each other – maintaining throughout a hilarity that belies their deep concern about the uncertainties of the civilian world to which they will soon be returning. Every bit as relevant today, if not more, than it was when it was written, James McLure's best known work is one of the earliest plays about what we now call PTSD.

Pvt. Wars was presented as a double-bill with Lone Star at the Century Theatre in 1979 after debuting at the famed Actors Theatre of Louisville as part of the annual Festival of New American Plays, an influential showplace for playwrights. Although it was subsequently expanded into a full-length play, this original one-act version of Pvt. Wars has become a favourite scene study vehicle in acting classes and workshops and remains a popular choice for regional, high school, and community theatre productions.

Cast: 3 male

What people say:

"James McLure's Pvt. Wars is one of those plays that young actors love to get their teeth into... It also is that rare anti-war play that accomplishes its magic without mentioning war. It's a fable about the leftovers of war, a funny and sad picture of what greedy industry does to the innocents who fight its battles." — Los Angeles Times

"…alternately funny and poignant…Pvt. Wars has been expanded into a consistently engrossing full-length drama." — Variety

"…deftly constructed, often very funny a true grasp on the absurdities of living." — New York Magazine

"I have nothing but praise for Mr. McLure." — The New Yorker

About the Playwright:

James McLure (1951-2011) was an American playwright and actor best known for his two one-act plays that reached Broadway. He became interested in acting in high school, performing in Shakespearean plays. He obtained a BFA degree from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, and subsequently studied at the Pacific Conservatory of the Performing Arts in Santa Maria, California. He was a participant playwright in The Missoula Colony, a writers workshop of the Montana Repertory Theatre and the only playwright to contribute to the Colony in every year for the first 15 years of its existence. He also wrote original screenplays for Columbia Pictures, Universal Pictures, and Twentieth Century-Fox.

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